On Sunday 20th October the PGM, RW Bro Tom Quinn, supported by Past APGM Henry Hobson and our Provincial Grand Secretary, Robert Anderson attended at the Wimbledon HQ of the St John’s Ambulance Association for the formal ceremony of handing over the keys for the latest London addition to the fleet of replacement ambulances, which the MBF is sponsoring as part of its current nationwide initiative. The ceremony of ‘the keys’ was presided over by Mr Paul Herbage MBE CSJ, Chairman of the St John County Priory Group for Greater London, who after his opening and welcoming remarks, invited our PGM to say a few words about the MBF initiative. Tom elaborated by telling the SJA group, which was made up of Wimbledon and Merton officers, a little more about Freemasonry in general and how the monies were raised through the donations of our many members. The keys were handed over to Tim Moth, the senior member of the SJA team who explained that the vehicle cost £85,000 and showed Tom the interior of the ambulance and the various items of equipment it carries. The ambulance was then dedicated by Father Paul Bagott whose blessing also included a further thanks for the generosity of the MBF.
Our entire party was then treated to refreshments and afternoon tea in the local SJA HQ which had been organised by volunteers of Wimbledon and Merton Event Services Unit. There we learned a little more of the history of ‘our’ ambulance which has already seen service at such events as Notting Hill Carnival and Proms in the Park.